During the First World War (1914-18) over 1.5 million Indian army soldiers saw active service alongside British troops. 12,000 Indian soldiers who were wounded on the Western Front were hospitalised at sites around Brighton. These included York Place School, the Dome, the Corn Exchange and the Royal Pavilion.
Chattri is a memorial built to honour the Indian dead of the First World War. It stands on the Downs near Patcham, at the place where Hindu and Sikh soldiers who died in Brighton war hospitals during 1914-1915 were cremated. It was unveiled by the Prince of Wales on 21st February 1921.
On the hot Sunday afternoon of 11th June 2023, around 300 people gathered to remember the sacrifices of all those soldiers who served and played a pivotal role in a moment of history. Without which ‘who we are’ today could have been very different for much of the world. Standing shoulder to shoulder with a raft of dignitaries, including: the Lord Lieutenant for East Sussex, MP’s, Councillors, the British Army, Navy, Air Force, Indian Army, High Commission of India, volunteers and members of the local community to name a few. We, NHSF(UK), were honoured to have been in attendance at the annual memorial service.
“And this the sons of Hindustan, from Himalaya to Scinde, from Hindu Kush to Deccan plains, rent in a day the ancient chains which isolated class from clan, and joined in battle as one man to die for Mata Hind.” – “Hurnam-Singh,” by General Sir James Wilcox.